Thursday, March 31, 2016

Under the Needle - Thursday

Today I'd like to share the latest part of my ink collection with you guys. Because this one took a little longer to heal because, I wasn't able to write a post on it right away. It has officially healed completely (for the most part), so I am ready to tell its story on The Stares today. First, here is the completed piece:

(If you're not able to tell where this is placed, it's on the very top part of my thigh). A popular question I've gotten is if I got this tattoo because I consider myself a super fan of The Weeknd. There's no question that I love a majority of the work The Weeknd has done, and yes. I would definitely consider myself a fan. But honestly, I've never consider myself a super fan of any artist. This piece and this mixtape represents the gateway moment in my life where music started becoming more than just sounds to me, but rather, a habit and lifestyle.
Now if any of you are fans of the contemporary R&B artist, you're probably familiar with this cover art from his second EP "Thursday". This particular EP was so important to me because I can still vividly remember this time in my life where music started meaning something more to me than what I just listened to on the radio. Even though I had already claimed myself as a fan after "House of Balloons", it was this mixtape where I started seeing the R&B music and artists past from that held such strong influence over almost all the music we listen to today. For The Weeknd in particular,  there a strong hint of MJ that just can't be glossed over. What had been so fascinating to me about it at the time was how he was able to incorporate that classic sound into his own dark, original music. That was so powerful to me. From that point on, I never heard music the same. It was during this time I really started to develop a desire to learn about everything music, starting from classical and working my way forward. About historical events that influenced certain songs and how certain songs influenced historical events. I know I still have a long way to go, but nevertheless, that passion was birthed following hearing this Thursday EP.
Another large part of my inspiration behind this piece was solely the artwork. The moment I laid eyes on that artwork, I was almost immediately drawn to it. I was drawn to her. And at the time, I wasn't sure why. But since I've seen it, I've always felt very connected to her and the emotion she's displaying in the photograph. Going through that motion of emotions was something that was difficult for me, as I'm sure it has been with most any woman. But growing up, I always remember just feeling everything in such extremes, which is something I didn't really understand or know how to embrace within myself. So it always served as an obstacle when dealing with my issues. I didn't know why they affected me so. It took me growing up and finally learning how to be okay with feeling any and all emotion to get the positive results I was looking for within myself. So this girl on this mixtape cover was just so familiar to me, and I felt like I really knew her.
Now as you can tell, the girl heads on my tattoo are not the same girl heads you see on the featured cover art, as other sources of inspiration translated my vision for it. As a young African-American woman I have always felt empowered by the women of color who share a voice in the creative arts. With that being said, I thought that the pictures and poses of the women I chose for the tattoo mimicked the original work quite similarly. I also loved that my artist used old school tattoo animation for my piece. For some reason, it just made the message of my tattoo feel more personal and authentic.:




Ink work by Corey Lambert (Walk the Line Tattoo - Athens, GA)

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Part 3 x Jordan Year

Welcome to the final night of my Jordan Year weekend. One of the extremely generous surprise gifts I was lucky enough to receive for my birthday this year was a night's stay at a hotel in the city so me and my friends could celebrate in style! It was everything I wanted to be and more, you guys. I feel overwhelmingly blessed that my 23rd birthday was brought in with such an abundance of love. And to top it all off (literally), the room was on the 40th floor, so the view was absolutely breath taking. But enough reminiscing - lets talk about this dress.

To be honest, this look I've been wanting to rock was completely Rihanna inspired. While I can't call myself a true fan of her music, I've always had major respect for her innovative fashion style. The copper slip dress she wore not too long ago set my heart a spinning. From the moment I saw that look, I already new it was going to be something I wanted to recreate for myself. So here is my interpretation of the slip-dress-turned-nightwear/street wear.

And for those of you that follow trends, you may be excited to know that casual lingerie is predicted to be a trend for Spring/Summer '16! So don't be surprised if you start seeing a lot more of these on the streets in the next few months. Especially by yours truly.

Yes. I was having a lot of fun doing an all out photo shoot in light of this hotel room. Unfortunately, no picture was able to capture just how comfortable that bed was.

My absolute favorite thing about this satin slip is the periwinkle lace detail. I'm pretty sure that's what sold me on the purchase. Ugh, so pretty.

Taking risks is something I really want to do more of this year. I liked to think that I was a risk taker, but my hesitance to wear a slip as dress kind of made me start second guessing that. It made me realize had I not seen it on Rihanna that day, I wouldn't have even came up with the idea to do something so bold. What I respect so much about her style is that she truly just wears whatever she wants and makes it into her own! More boldness and courage as far as my fashion sense is concerned is definitely going to grow and change this year, and all because of this little slip dress. Thank you satin slip, and thank you Rihanna. The Stares may jut get a whole lot more interesting this year.
Slip - by Victoria's Secret
Statement Necklace - by H&M
Shoes - by Cathy Jean
Photography by Jazmyn Wormley

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

WestSide Takeover x SB16

Hey friends! So I know you're probably wondering what happened to the finale of my fabulous Jordan Year weekend. Never fear - it's on the way! I just had to take a brief hiatus to spend some time on the west coast this week. And let me tell you, it was just riveting to say the least. Stay tuned to my Instagram this week to see all the marvelous adventures me and my friends shared.

I've been spending a lot of time in California these past few months for job interviews, to visit friends, and spend sometime on the most beautiful beaches. I won't give away any concrete news right now, but just know I can't wait to share with you guys my plans for the future! On this trip I got to see spaceships, meet wild seals, learn a little more about my ancestral history, and eat some amazing west coast grub. All in all, it was a phenomenal trip.

This outfit I constructed on one of our last night's in the city - and all from Forever 21 believe it or not! I've been wanting some green khaki clothes in my closet for a while now, so when I saw this pencil skirt in the store, I knew I had to make something happen with it. What surprised me was how well this color went with just about every light color I paired with it - whether it be beige, white, pink - you name it. I finally settled on this off-white crop with the floral attachments because of its fun personality and detailed backing.

And of course, just a touch of gold accessories to bring my creation to life.

The next time I'm out there, I want to be able to make a post for you guys about all the great street fashion I saw. Especially when I went onto FIDM's campus - all the students were flawlessly dressed! Just Incredible. Now, tell me Fashion Fiends, are you ready for the Jordan Year finale post?! Stay tuned, Stares Goers. Stay tuned...
Crop Top - by Forever 21
Khaki Skirt - by Forever 21
Bracelets - (variation: H&M., Swarvoski, given)
Shoes - Airforce 1 by Nike
Photography by Eboni Cook